Thursday, November 5, 2009

Food, Glorious Digital Food

Food and photography. Two of my favourite things. What's not to love when they are combined?

A little research reveals some of the many things to consider when photographing food - that same research  reveals just how many resources there are to help.

Photographing food is an art, and the book Still Life and Special Effects Photography by Roger Hicks and Frances Schultz, according to reviews, contains high-end, magazine-quality photos and techniques. Food as photographic still life.
Some of the important considerations for food photography involve the food itself. Food wilts, fades, melts oxidizes, and  gels. How long a shoot will take is dictated by the food itself and the tricks in the photographer's and stylist's bag.

Lou Manna's book Digital Food Photography covers many tips, techniques, and problems. Manna is a commercial food photographer in New York. His photos are truly awesome.

Lighting is a complicated aspect of food photography. Lights are hot; food melts. Shiny dishes and glassware require fancy handling. Food we want to photograph is usually highly coloured - lots of reds and greens. It needs colour balance in order not to look odd.

 Lighting for Food and Drink Photography by Steve Bavister offers techniques for lighting issues.

Food styling involves all the elements of presentation - dishes, linens, silver- and glassware, foods and garnish to accompany the star food. All of the things that make the food appealing are in the realm of the stylist. You might say that styling is the hair and make-up for food.

Food Styling for Photographers by Linda Bellingham and Jean Ann Bybee covers the styling bases.

The result of all the food-handling, lighting, colour balancing, and styling is photos that make food look, well, good enough to eat!

Now, after all the work of writing this post, I want dessert.

Chinese Veggies Photo
Wine Glasses Photo
Cake Photo


Rose Belle said...

That brownie looks so GOOOOD! There's nothing better than a something beautifully taken with a camera. I wish I can work the camera, maybe with more practice, I will.

ChrisJ said...

Thanks Rose Belle. I'm so glad you enjoyed the post.

Pearl said...

you food blog too. I didn't know there were books dedicated to food photography. bonus!

ChrisJ said...


It is a bonus and you get to eat the props!!!

corfubob said...

Hi Chris, this post put a stop to my reading for now - completely forgot to have breakfast Tell me something - do you think I should persevere in posting tips on digital photography, or just post lots more cat and landscape pix without mentioning techniques? I really want to make 'pictures' of people's cats, but wonder if this is too narrow a specialization for a blog. take care Bob

ChrisJ said...

Hi Bob,

I have come to the conclusion about blogging that you have to follow where it leads you. At My Soiree is not at all what I envisioned or where I started, but I like it better now. If ads and income aren't an issue (even if they are!), do what pleases you.